The temptation of multitasking lurks everywhere: The inbox flashes, the social media channels want to be watched and everything is more exciting than the report, on which we are writing. So we jumped from one task to another and did in the evening but only half done - because we were with the IQ of an 8-year-old.

Health risk_Multitasking

The disadvantages are serious

Multitasking doesn't necessarily just mean getting things done at the same time, even if you're doing them fast one after the other or in a jumble, show up negative Effects. When driving, it is immediately noticeable that our concentration drops when we drive, talk on the phone and reach for the water bottle at the same time.

Ours is similar Brain, when we're in Meeting eMail write or constantly our inbox check, while we are at one Presentation work. Two studies show how serious the effects of the daily mental balancing act are:

  1. A study of the University of London has shown that multitasking in the office has similar effects on the concentration, like marijuana to smoke or a night not to sleep. Especially in men, multitasking reduces the IQ by up to 15 points - this corresponds approximately to the mental performance of an 8-year-old.
  2. Investigations by Dr. David Meyer have shown that it costs us up to 40% of our productive time when we jump from task to task rather than successively.

Our brain - not made for multitasking

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However, in our Society Multitasking not questioned enough. Neuroscientific research shows that the human mind is not made for multitasking. He can't stand doing many things at the same time. Multitasking definitely reduces performance.

It is also fatal that the brain adapts to the permanent Stress, who with the settlement of different Tasks connected at the same time, accustomed. Once multitasking has become a habit, it's very difficult to switch back to a sedentary state.

Why are we still addicted to multitasking?

Quite simply because it feels good to pursue new stimuli. Our brain is happy about distraction and new impressions. Often these distractions give us a quick sense of happiness: one eMail in the inbox tells us to be important; if we make the pending call immediately, we have ticked off a point in minutes that we can delete from our to-do list.

happiness! The lengthy presentation for the management cannot keep up. Multitasking also gives us an aura of stress and busyness. That may seem impressive from the outside on colleagues act than calmly approaching one task at a time.

5 Tips: Cheat the multitasking

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  1. Whoever is aware of the situations in which he or she is easily distracted, can mitigate the negative effects of multitasking. For example, by setting fixed dates, where you can deliberately allow distractions, while keeping the inbox locked in other time windows.
  2. One should also ask what do I need this for Emailflood and why do I have to constantly navigate the social media platforms? Do I feel alone when I am not interacting with the network and receiving no emails or text messages? Even a day without the internet can lead to social withdrawal symptoms for many people.
  3. It is important to set your own priorities in your work and to choose what to include and what not. It's like leafing through a magazine, skimming through each article, and then consciously deciding what to read.
  4. Take stock! Which communication channels do I use - telephone, Email, Twitter, Facebook? How can I intelligently filter the flood of information that is falling on me? Individual information management has become very important in the work process nowadays - it is about controlling the media mix, which is different for everyone, and not allowing yourself to be flooded, but rather selecting the information that you need.
  5. Difficult tasks should be done consciously with high concentration. The small pleasures of multitasking are treated to routine tasks. With practice, you can recover the 40% of your time lost through multitasking - and can also work with full mental capacity rather than just being hard-pressed. Just try!

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